Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce and Shericka Jackson earn money at Poland’s inaugural Diamond League while Femke Bol sets a 400m PB and meeting record
The Diamond League returned post-Eugene with its first ever meeting in Poland.
Silesia was the venue on Saturday (Aug 6) and free admission ensured a big crowd as 49 medallists and 12 champions from last month’s World Championships participated in a top-class meeting, although compared to Eugene and the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham the fight for Diamond League points rather than medals meant it came up short in terms of excitement and atmosphere.
Ironically many of the headlines came from Commonwealth athletes who had chosen to focus on this rather than Birmingham.
Most believe, however, that their absence was their loss rather than Birmingham’s given the fantastic Games atmosphere which many believe is one of the best ever experienced.
Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce had previously run 10.67 for 100m three times this season in Nairobi, Paris and Eugene and the world’s greatest ever women’s 100m runner underlined her consistency with a world-leading 10.66 (0.5) as she destroyed the opposition leaving American Aleia Hobbs almost three metres in arrears.
Marie-Josee Ta Lou was third in 11.00.
Fraser-Pryce said: “I always come into races expecting to run fast. Last year I set a meeting record here and now it is a Diamond League and it is a lot more competitive. It is amazing to be this consistent. If you invite me, I will come back next year,” she laughed.
Take a bow Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce. She’s clocked 10.67 so how about go lower with 10.66 (0.5) at the Silesia Diamond League? 🔥🇯🇲
— AW (@AthleticsWeekly) August 6, 2022
In an ideal world, a clash between world 200m champion Shericka Jackson and 400m champion Shaunae Miller-Uibo would have been in a meaningful competition but instead came here.
It was a no contest though as Jackson was a metre clear at 50m (6.2) and two metres clear at 100m in 11.2, three at 150m (16.3) and five at the finish in 21.84.
Miller-Uibo had to work hard in the last 10 metres to catch Jenna Prandini, who had optimistically tried to keep pace with Jackson on the bend and the pair ran 22.35 and 22.39.
After Kyle Langford had led on the final bend, world 800m champion Emmanuel Korir came from a long way back to snatch victory in 1:45.72.
Korir had run in the Commonwealth 400m but was disqualified for a lane infringement and his absence was noted from Kenya’s 4x400m team in Birmingham’s heats.
In second was Ferguson Rotich (1:45.76) with Tony van Diepen squeezing home third in 1:45.80.
Langford unusually had a disappointing last 100m to finish seventh in 1:46.65 as he paid for a big move down the back straight where he covered the 100m section in 12.7.
A day after winning the Commonwealth title, Tom Walsh, showed it is possible to mix representing your country and be a professional athlete and was back in action and he produced six 21 metres throws and led with a 21.70m fourth round throw until former world champion and Eugene runner-up Joe Kovacs produced a final round 21.79m in another fine series as she also had two throws of 21.66m.
American Josh Awotunde was third with 21.35m.
Commonwealth athletes were also in action in the women’s shot and Sarah Mitton matched her Birmingham position with a 19.44m throw but finished behind world champion Chase Ealey’s 20.38m and Eugene bronze medallist Jess Schilder’s Dutch record 19.84m.
There was also a Dutch record in the 400m.
Femke Bol switched to the flat event and she regained her Dutch record that Lieke Klaver had eclipsed in Eugene (50.18 in the semi-final) and her 49.75 improved her previous outdoor best from 50.37 to though she had run a 50.30 indoors.
However, it was a far from clear win as Natalia Kaczmarek, wearing identical kit to Bol, closed fast at the end and set a PB of 49.86 in second.
Jamaicans Candice McLeod (50.22) and Stephenie McPherson (50.31) who clearly would have challenged for Commonwealth medals had they chosen to run for Jamaica rather than financial means, finished third and fourth.
The Dutch also won a pedestrian women’s 3000m (2000m in 5:59.06 was almost nine-minute pace) and saw 15 still in contention at the bell despite a 66.16 penultimate lap and 11 were in with a chance at 200m to go but a sub-60 final lap by double Olympic champion Sifan Hassan showed the great athlete is returning to her best as she won easily in 8:39.27. Most of the damage was done in a 28.9 final 200m.
The 5000m world leader Ejgayehu Taye was second in 8:40.14 and Kenyan Eugene fourth-placer Margaret Kipkemboi was third with 8:40.96.
Another athlete missed from Birmingham was world silver medallist Kirani James and he ran 44.55 here but was well beaten by world champion Michael Norman who, with 44.11, was notably quicker than he was in Eugene.
Bryce Deadmon came from far back to finish third in 44.68 with another Birmingham absentee, defending 400m champion Isaac Makwala, fifth in 45.42.
World champion Alison dos Santos enjoyed another 400m hurdles victory, albeit much slower than in Eugene as his 47.80 gave him a clear win over Khallifah Rosser’s 48.30 and France’s Wilfried Happio (48.74) as the latter two swapped finishing order from Eugene where they were fourth and fifth.
Poland placed one-two in the hammer with five-time world champion Pawel Fajdek’s second round 81.27m proving sufficient for another victory.
His compatriot Olympic champion Wojciech Nowicki was second with 79.19m with France’s Quentin Bigot third (78.83m).
World champion Brooke Andersen led a USA one-two in the women’s hammer with 75.76m with Janee’ Kassanvoid 74.89m second and Poland’s Malwina Kopron third with 70.37m.
Andy Diaz won the triple jump with a second round 17.53m (0.00) from world champion Pedro Pichardo’s 17.29m (0.6) and China’s Zhu Yaming 17.25m (-1.2).
In the 100m hurdles Olympic champion Jasmine Camacho-Quinn returned to winning ways with 12.34 (0.8) from former world record-holder Kendra Harrison (12.37) and Tia Jones was third (12.49).
In fourth Poland’s Pia Skrzyszowska’s set a PB 12.51 after a 12.58 heat.
Ajee’ Wilson left it late in the 800m and only in the last few strides did she overhaul her US compatriot Sage Hurta (1:58.40) as Slovenian Anita Horvat was a delighted third in a PB 1:58.96.
There was also an American win in the 100m as Trayvon Bromell’s 9.95 (-0.7) won in 9.95 from team-mate Marvin Bracy and Jamaican Ackeem Blake (both 10.00).
Two former world champions, Christian Coleman and Yohan Blake, shared 10.13 as they finished fourth and fifth.
Commonwealth runner-up Akani Simbine was only seventh in 10.21.
The women’s 1500m saw a surprise defeat for world 5000m champion Gudaf Tsegay.
The early pace was badly judged as the pacemaker blazed through 400m in 59.56 and 800m in a suicidal 2:02.93. Tsegay took over but look heavy-legged as she led through 1200m in 3:09.27.
Diribe Welteji followed her into the straight but easily moved away to win in a PB 3:56.91 to Tsegay’s 3:58.18.
Hirut Mishesgha, who had initially led when the pacemaker dropped out, finished third in 4:00.93.
Back in eighth, Adelle Tracey – who was unable to compete in Birmingham after switching recently from Britain to Jamaica – finished in a PB 4:02.36.
READ MORE: Commonwealth Games coverage
The Czech Republic’s Jakub Vadlejch won the javelin with a 86.68m throw from Julian Weber’s 84.94m and Curtis Thompson’s 82.39m.
World silver medallist and Olympic champion Militiadis Tentoglou headed a sub-standard long jump competition with a 8.13m leap as countback decided second as Steffin McCarter’s 8.09m (-0.1) and Maykel Masso’s 8.09m (+0.1) completed the top three though Marquis Dendy, wearing a hat, also jumped 8.09m (-0.2).
The women’s high jump was also a disappointment as Uzbekistan’s Safina Sadullayeva defeated multiple global medallist Yaroslava Mahuchikh on countback as both cleared 1.92m.
Haruka Kitaguchi’s 65.10m won the javelin from five-time global champion Barbora Spotakova who threw a brilliant 62.29m season’s best at the age of 42 while Liveta Jasiunaite’s 61.79m placed third.
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